Apr 2, 2018 12:05 AM
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Develop a lesson plan for a preschool using Vygotsky’s ZPD. In an evaluative paragraph, describe how these lessons would be explained by Piaget using his view of development. Use of APA format for this assignment is limited to references only.
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Cognitive Development in Infancy and Toddlerhood
Earlier lessons have already provided an introduction to the basics of cognitive development. Cognitive development is the development of thought, mental processes and language. Theories on cognitive development attempt to explain how children develop thought and memory, gain information processing skills, and respond to their environments.
TOPICS COVERED WILL INCLUDE:
- Piaget’s view of development
- Vygotsky’s concept of the zone of proximal development as relates to our understanding of early cognitive development.
- Environmental influences on early mental development, including home, child care, and early interventions for at-risk infants and toddlers.
- Individual and cultural differences in early language development, including factors that influence these differences.
Fundamentals of Cognitive Development
Cognitive development in infants and toddlers advances at a rapid rate as the brain matures and children draw on their natural propensity to be active learners engaging with their environment. Several theories help us understand this developmental trajectory and also illuminate how to support optimal cognitive outcomes.
· Cognitive development is one of three significant branches or domains of development; the other two are motor/physical and social/emotional development. Construction of thought processes are marked by increasingly advanced abilities in thinking, reasoning, and problem-solving as children move from infancy to early childhood, later childhood and adolescence.
Factors Which Influence Cognitive Development
· BRAIN MATURATION
· ENVIRONMENTAL STIMULATION
· SOCIAL INTERACTION
Several factors influence cognitive development in infants and children. These include both genetic factors and environmental ones. Brain maturation is essential to cognitive development. Maturation is any permanent change in thought or behaviour that occurs through the biological process of aging without regard to environmental influences. This is a purely biological process; as the child grows, the brain changes.
Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development is one of the most recognized in the field. The theory’s central tenet is the child is an active learner who goes through stages where thinking advances as a function of specific underlying mental structures and processes. A group called Neo-Piagetians has expanded the original theory by incorporating an information-processing perspective.
PIAGET’S THEORY OF COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT
STAGES OF COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT
Schemes are an organized way of making sense of experiences. These are a representation in the mind of a set of experiences, objects, perceptions or actions that goes together in some way. Schemes enable infants and children to understand their world and even to predict what will happen next. The scheme is a key way that the brain organizes information.
According to Piaget, cognitive development begins with simple sensorimotor action patterns like dropping an object to see what happens. As children get older, the patterns of learning become significantly more complex. The child becomes more deliberate and creative in his actions, showing that thought is occurring prior to the action. For Piaget, development consistently precedes learning.
· Adaptation is one of two processes that explain changes in schemes. Schemes are built through interacting directly with the environment. Adaptation is used to achieve cognitive balance, or what Piaget called equilibrium. When the child is not in a state of balance or equilibrium, changes to the schemes must occur to enable the child to continue to develop and learn. Adaptation occurs when the child feels conflict cognitively between what is believed to be true about the world and what is being experienced. For instance, a child’s scheme of “dog” might be a large dog, like a golden retriever. When the child first meets a chihuahua, the scheme of “dog” must change to recognize that both the golden retriever and the chihuahua are “dogs” even though they look very little like one another.
· ORGANIZATION, A COGNITIVE PROCESS
· NOT DEPENDENT ON ENVIRONMENTAL CONTACT